New Scream asks what a modern horror movie should look like

To an impressive extent, directors Matt Bettinelli-Olpin and Tyler Gillett (Ready or Not) and their team manage to square the circle, a trick they accomplish in part by turning their film into a symposium on what news is. Scream should look like.

Should The Last Killer take inspiration from the “elevated” horror of get out and The Babadook, or go back to the basics of slasher? Is it time to focus on a new generation, or does the heart and soul of the IP rest with its “legacy characters” – serial survivor Sidney Prescott (Neve Campbell), bumbling sheriff Dewey Riley ( David Arquette) and hard-nosed reporter Gale Weathers (Courteney Cox)?

Cleverness has its place, but the truth is the show would hardly have lasted this long without Campbell, an iconic Final Girl right up there with Jamie Lee Curtis in Halloween. Through all the Scream films, it is his conviction that allows us to believe that, despite everything, what is at stake is indeed life or death.

Doe-Eyed Melissa Barrera (In the heights) can’t match that gravity as new protagonist Sam Carpenter, a troubled exile from Woodsboro who returns home in her twenties. Starring among the newcomers is Jasmin Savoy Brown, who brings comedic verve to the table as Mindy Meeks-Martin, a worthy successor to her late Uncle Randy (played in Jamie Kennedy’s earlier films) as a movie enthusiast. resident horror of Woodsboro.

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As directors, Bettinelli-Olpin and Gillett take a more largely cartoonish approach than Craven, and don’t quite have a knack for combining laughs with genuine scares – a challenge heightened by current Hollywood conventions which dictate that a film individual is just one episode. of a potentially endless soap opera.

But this is a series that has always been in dialogue with its audience, which means raising objections is part of the fun. Up-and-coming horror fans who find this out might prefer to wait until the final episode is available to stream with the rest: a midnight-to-dawn marathon would be a night well spent.

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